//WhatsApp's Future Vision: "Private Trade" and Payments
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WhatsApp's Future Vision: "Private Trade" and Payments

 

 

Today, at the Facebook F8 Developer Conference, CEO Mark Zuckerberg made a series of announcements related to the future vision of the company: more channels of confidentiality for the users. He also announced a major redesign of the site and the Facebook application.

Product Catalog WhatsApp. As part of a larger discussion on private messaging, Zuckerberg introduced the WhatsApp commercial catalog. This will be a way for small businesses to introduce products to users who interact with them on WhatsApp. A screen copy leaked online just a few years ago, indicated such an offer. introduction of announcements. Launched early 2018, The WhatsApp business is primarily aimed at small business owners.

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Companies will be able to download images and product descriptions, although few details were added to this announcement. The question of whether or not these products could be sold directly through the application was visibly absent.

Instagram extended the number of purchasable messages to more businesses today. There is also Instagram in the in-app crate with a limited group of brands at the moment. As a result, I would expect similar developments for WhatsApp.

Global payment platform. Zuckerberg also sees WhatsApp as a global payment platform (like Venmo or its PayPal owner). The company recently introduced WhatsApp Pay in India and Facebook says that one million people are currently using it.

The combination of products and payments on WhatsApp makes its future a global platform for "private commerce". Zuckerberg notably talked about the use cases of small businesses. "It's important for all small businesses that do not have a web presence," he said. This describes a large part of the developing world, where WhatsApp is heavily penetrated.

Zuckerberg also believes that private messaging / social communication will become a "primary way" for companies to interact with their customers. However, it has not yet been materialized on Facebook Messenger.

Facebook acquired WhatsApp in 2014 for approximately $ 19 billion in cash and stock. Citing disputes with Zuckerberg, the two founders of WhatsApp have now left the company .

Why it is important. WhatsApp claims about 1.5 billion users worldwide, of which one-third use the application daily. The announcements arrive this year. But it is also clear that Facebook sees a significant business opportunity for the platform, on which it can also focus.

An interesting question is whether all of Facebook's apps and platforms will share capabilities and feature parity and will simply be positioned for different audiences. That's what seems to be going well, with ads, commerce and inter-app communication on all Facebook messaging platforms.

About the Author

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Greg Sterling is a collaborative editor at Search Engine Land. He writes a personal blog, Screenwerk on the links between digital media and consumer behavior in the real world. He is also Vice President of Strategy and Knowledge for the Local Search Association. Follow him on on Twitter or find him at the address Google+ .